Two Dead in Texas Church Shooting, Highlighting the Need for Good Guys with Guns in Places of Worship

Update 12:41 a.m.: It is now being reported that a second victim has died as the result of injuries sustained in the attack on the Texas church.

Two people are dead and another is in critical condition after a Sunday morning shooting at a church in White Settlement, Texas. The shooter is reportedly one of the deceased.

The attack happened at around 11 a.m. local time at the West Freeway Church of Christ, according to reports.

A witness told CBS 11 News the gunman walked up to a server during communion with a shotgun and then opened fire. According to the witness, another church member — identified as a former FBI agent and part of the church’s security — shot the suspect.

One victim has died and a second victim has reportedly undergone surgery to treat his injuries. Two other victims were treated and released. Neither the victims nor the suspect has been identified at this time.

“It was the most scariest thing. You feel like your life is flashing before you. I was so worried about my little one,” Isabel Arreola told CBS 11.

“When White Settlement PD and White Settlement Fire Department arrived on scene, they did find a total of three patients that have been transported in critical condition. That includes who they do believe is the shooter, so that is a total of three, including the shooter, who have been transported,” Fort Worth spokesman Mike Drivdahl said in a news conference.

The church was live-streaming its service at the time of the attack.

Disrn reported:

Video footage showed what appears to be a man shooting at least two people and then getting shot as he tried turning his weapon at the crowd.

The video of the shooting, reviewed by Disrn, appears to confirm these reports. The shooter brandished a long gun — what seemed by the sound and recoil produced by the discharges to be a shotgun — for several seconds before firing. The assailant appeared to fire at two men standing in the back of the church as they reached for weapons. The shooter fired twice, hitting both men once each, before he was dropped by a single shot from another standing man. From the first shot to the last took approximately 2.5 seconds.

A local reporter described the shooting on Twitter:

Howerton also shared an interview with a church member:

The church security guard was apparently not the only member of the congregation who was prepared to protect the church.

Texas Gov. Gregg Abbott praised the hero who took out the shooter:

A Texas law that went into law on Sept. 1 allowing licensed gun owners to carry in places of worship may have saved multiple lives today, highlighting the need for such laws in other states and localities. It's no coincidence that most mass shootings occur in gun-free zones -- and the body counts are exponentially higher when there are no good guys with guns to take out the bad guys.

U.S. Attorney Erin Nealy Cox said worshippers should not have to fear attacks:

Today's shooting and recent attacks on Jewish worshippers, including a deadly stabbing on Saturday, also highlight the need for responsible gun owners to protect churches and synagogues. The growing hostility toward religion, and in particular toward religious conservatives, makes it likely that more attacks will occur, so places of worship must be prepared to protect their congregations.

Join me in praying for the families of the victims and for this church as it deals with the aftermath of the attack. May God be glorified by their responses and their love for one another.